US net neutrality rules expire, court battle looms

US net neutrality rules expire, court battle looms

Yesterday marked the end of U.S. government rules regarding net neutrality, but the new policy faces legal challenges from individual states, some of which have also developed their own rules on the matter.

A new set of rules at the Federal Communications Commission went into effect Monday, ending consumer protections that assure equal legal broadband access that doesn't slow or block certain sources.

Net neutrality is the idea that your internet service provider (ISP) can't change their speed on sites they don't support: It doesn't matter if you're looking at The Washington Post or Str8UpGayPorn, your ISP can't throttle your speed so your porn loads super-slowly, and if your ISP is a fan of Trump, they can't block the WaPo.

Pai says that the criticism from net neutrality supporters is overheated, that there are sufficient safeguards in place to protect against broadband providers from abusing their control over the internet. The Federal Communications Commission's repeal of net neutrality rules was voted on a year ago, and it finally comes into effect today (June 11).

E-commerce startups have feared that they could end up on the losing end of paid prioritization, with their websites and services loading more slowly than those run by internet behemoths. "Our transparency rule will also help ensure that any problematic conduct by Internet service providers is quickly identified and corrected".

FCC chairman Ajit Pai had argued repealing the rules would make broadband providers "offer".

OR also enacted a net neutrality law, signed in April and that goes into action in 2019, but it only restricts state agencies and other public bodies from contracting with network providers that don't meet non-discriminatory provisions.

Thankfully, not necessarily. A number of states have passed state-level legislation re-enacting the net neutrality rules.


You might consider investing in a zero-rating plan, also called sponsored data plans, which allow customers to access a specific service without using data. According to the National Council of State Legislatures, governors in six states - New Jersey, New York, Montana, Rhode Island, Vermont and Hawaii - have signed executive orders upholding net neutrality, and three - Washington, Vermont and OR - have enacted legislation that does so. Under President Obama, the Federal Communications Commission mandated that internet service providers treat all internet traffic the same.

A more urgent battle is brewing in several states, which are passing their versions of net neutrality rules in defiance of the federal repeal.

When fighting against the 2015 net neutrality rules, the ISPs said nearly in unison that they would prefer to leave net neutrality rules to Congress instead of the FCC. "The combination of no net neutrality and video consolidation creates new bottlenecks that empower the traditional media industry to raise prices and limit online competition".

"Absolutely. I'm for net neutrality", said Wilson. Some states are moving to restore net neutrality, and lawsuits are pending.

Pai attempted to bolster the FCC's decision through claims that the new regulations introduces stronger transparency laws and hence more protection for the consumer.

Despite the repeal, some internet service providers have said they will continue to follow net neutrality principles.

For now, we are in a wait and see mode to see what happens next.

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